The protein and healthy fat content in peanut butter aid in bulking up. Managing the calorie intake along with your daily diet is key in bodybuilding.
Many bodybuilders and elites alike have vouched for the effectiveness of peanut butter as a supplement for their bodybuilding diet. With more protein content, peanut butter is a staple in the bodybuilding community.
Can peanut butter help you in bulking up? If so, which is the best one on the market? Read through this blog post to find the answers.
Benefits of Peanut Butter
As a huge fan of peanuts, for me, peanut butter is the glue that’s holding my life together! It’s a relief that something so delicious and calorie-rich is healthy for the body when consumed moderately.
Despite fears of excessive intake causing weight gain, people love the well-known bread spread for its wonderful taste and other nutritional benefits. Here are some of the reasons why peanut butter has an untainted recognition for being healthy:
- Rich in healthy fats: It contains healthy fats such as monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, which lower the risk of obesity when consumed moderately. Adequate fat intake also helps increase testosterone levels.
- Rich in calories: More fat= More Calories. Nut butter in general is high in calories. It contains around 200 calories per serving- great if you want to gain weight but might prove unhealthy if you consume it in excess.
- A great source of protein: Peanut butter is a good source of protein that assists in increasing muscle mass. The roughly 25% protein content promotes muscle growth and aids in muscle recovery.
- Keeps you filled: The high-fat content in peanut butter makes digestion slower. This promotes fullness helping you go longer periods of time without another full meal.
- Helps your diet: Even when you are on a diet, peanut butter can keep you energized throughout the day. For those who end up overeating, peanut butter is a life-saver as it can keep you filled even when you are on a diet.
- Versatile: Apart from using it as a bread spread, making protein shakes, cookies and desserts with it, are some great ways you can incorporate peanut butter into your daily diet.
- Health Benefits: Studies show that nuts in general help reduce the risk of heart diseases and blood pressure by effectively lowering unhealthy low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and triglyceride levels.
Peanut Butter for Bulking
Peanut butter is a popular choice among most fitness enthusiasts, however, it’s untrue to claim that peanut butter has everything you need.
It is a good addition to your daily diet and definitely helps build muscle but it has to be accompanied by a balanced diet. Keeping a count of your daily calorie intake is key.
Assuming that your daily diet is well-curated here are ways peanut butter can enhance your bodybuilding journey:
- The fat content makes it an excellent source of calories required for bodybuilding.
- Easy to incorporate into the daily diet if you’re mindful of how much you’re eating throughout the day.
- Helps in a strict diet by keeping you full.
But, let’s also be aware of the cons:
- Fats in peanut butter make it difficult to hit daily targeted calories because they digest slowly.
- You can overindulge and blow your diet limitations. (Can’t blame it for being yummy!)
How and When to use Peanut Butter?
Peanut butter is best consumed 2-3 hours before your workout since it takes some time to digest. It’s a great idea to make it your pre-workout meal by just adding in a few more proteins and carbs.
It can also be eaten post-workout, however, it’s best to keep your meals after a workout mostly focused on giving your body the proteins and carbs required for it to replenish.
Can peanut butter replace pre-workouts?
It can replace your supplements if it’s paired with adequate protein and carbs. To help you with becoming independent from pre-workouts for your nutritional needs, read through our blog post on getting used to working out without Pre-workouts.
Choosing The Best Peanut Butter
There are several peanut butter brands on the market and it can be confusing to pick one that aligns with your fitness goals. Here’s what to look for in the ingredient list to determine whether or not your peanut butter is nutritional:
- Natural ingredients: Peanut butter is ideal when it doesn’t contain any additional ingredients to peanuts and salt. However, on the market, you would find ones with a few other additions. Consider purchasing one with fewer, more natural ingredients.
- Low levels of added oils: Hydrogenated oils and trans fat are used in processed peanut butter to prevent natural oil separation. These ingredients are known to cause heart diseases.
- Less added sugar: A little bit of sugar in your peanut butter is fine. Look out for and avoid added sugars like molasses, maltodextrin, and corn syrup.
- No emulsifiers: Researchers have reported that emulsifiers are linked to higher risks of chronic heart, liver, and bowel diseases.
A word of caution: Avoid low-fat or reduced-fat peanut butter. This is because some of them contain high levels of sugar to compensate for the flavor fat-free peanut butter lacks. Fat found in peanuts is not detrimental to your health, so never fall for low-fat versions.
When you open up a jar of peanut butter and if you notice an oily layer on top, it is a good indication to you that it’s natural. What you observe as the separation is nut oil, which can be easily combined with the butter by giving it a good stir.
Types of Peanut Butter and Our Recommendations
- Natural Peanut Butter- Usually contains more than 90% peanut. Meaning- Low added flavors or preservatives. Ideal for people looking to gain weight.
- Protein Fortified Peanut Butter- This contains an excess of protein blended into it. We recommend looking for a peanut butter + whey protein combo if you want to bulk up.
- Enhanced/ Sweetened Peanut Butter- These versions of peanut butter are often mixed with oil or other additives. Sweetened varieties have lower calories as they have more carbs than fat.
On your journey bulking up, having a well-curated diet is crucial. If you are looking to hack into your diet with other convenient diet plans, squatz and oats is an equally effective option too.
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